PorchDrinking’s own discuss beer.
ABV 8.5% IBU 23 SRM 30
Chances are unless you have been to Germany you might not have had a traditional Weihnachts Bier. Pronounce veye-nuchts-beer, the name comes from the German word for Christmas, Weihnachten. This beer is traditionally seen during the advent, or 4 weeks before Christmas in Germany and is gaining popularity in the US. The huge malt bill creates a high ABV, great for warming up on those cold winter nights.
Every time we are fortunate enough to be invited to a beer event I am reminded of just how innovative, impressive, communal and delicious our beer community can be. Wynkoop’s Parade of Darks was no exception. With over 70 beers on tap ranging from amber to opaque colors, the benefit for MetroCareRing was the perfect way to usher in some fantastic winter warmers.
Lost in the shuffle in the more recent trends of sours, black IPAs, saisons, and old world recipes has been the foregone marriage of chocolate and coffee. Sure a few classic coffee beers are still hanging around shelves, or pop up infrequently from start up microbreweries, such as Renegade’s Sunday Morning. But it seems like those coffee flavored brews have lost some of the hype. New Belgium’s Imperial Coffee Stout definitely restores that swag.
Some buddies and I have started a weekly jam session dubbed “Jam and Bomb”. We get together, drink bombers, and noodle around on our instruments. Usually the beer takes a back seat to the rock but this week the beer offered some pleasant surprises.
Two months ago, back when it was still 70 degrees and absolutely gorgeous outside, I went back to good ol’ Athens, Ohio, home of Ohio Brew Week, to check out the beers on tap at the 14th Annual Ohio Pawpaw Festival. For those of you who don’t know, the pawpaw is North America’s largest native tree fruit, and Southern Ohio is home to some of the largest and best tasting on the planet. I picked up my parents ’95 Jaguar and my good friend Bruce, and we headed out to Lake Snowden in Albany. Bruce was the optimal choice for a companion, as he was voted Athens 2nd Best Bartender by The Athens News. Despite my parents having lived in Athens for the last 13 years, I had actually never been to the Pawpaw Festival before, and I was surprised by how many people were there.
Pump the breaks on that spell checker, Stone’s Lukcy Basartd needs no correction. After initially noticing the devious yet iconic demonic image on the front, beer purveyors need flip the bomber over to notice a hefty description about Lukcy Basartd’s origins. Oh and it should be noted that the entire description is also written in that same disjointed misspelled jargon.
Goose Island was the first true craft beer I ever tried. It was a well-respected and widely available brand throughout the Chicago area, so it only made sense. 312 (named after the area code in which it was originally brewed) quickly became one of the first beers I would recommend to folks who aren’t traditionally fans of beer, or are looking to expand beyond the typical Bud or Miller products. Similar to most wheat beers, 312 is easy to drink and lacks the hoppy or malty impact of heavier beers. It’s not a great beer – it’s a great beginner’s beer.
Image provided by Lauren Hoff of Napa of Beer
ABV: 5.5% IBUs: 65
Telluride Brewing Company took me by surprise. While visiting that oh-so-gorgeous mountain town, my friend and I stopped for dinner at Brown Dog Pizza after a long day of driving and hiking. Naturally, we decided a few beers were in order. We dove into their draft selection from Telluride Brewing Co. and never looked back. The Bridal Veil Rye Pale Ale is your link to the mountains we all dream of living in.
When I saw my next beer showcase was due the day after Thanksgiving, and I found out we were going to Battle Creek, Michigan for the holiday, I knew I had to do a review on a beverage from Arcadia Ales. I could’ve chosen Dark Horse or Bells, but I’ve been going to Arcadia since before I could legally drink because in addition to their great beers, they also have some awesome brick oven pizza. So, on our way out of town today, we stopped. I had the Loch Down Scotch Ale, and my brother had their IPA. We also ordered two pepperoni pies. But what I was looking most forward to was one of the beers I brought home, their Cocoa Loco.
Every year after the departure of Halloween is right around the time that I begin my own transition from IPAs, Saisons, and Pilsners toward the darker, heartier stouts, holiday beers, and the occasional porter. Wynkoop Brewing looks to help usher in that same transition this weekend with their Parade of Darks beer holiday fundraiser.
Being a native of North-Eastern Ohio, the Christmas season is an exciting time for me. Possibly one of the only things Cleveland is recognized positively for nation-wide is our Great Lakes Christmas Ale. While this is one of my favorite beers, I would like to take some time to appreciate a delicious ale brought to us by our neighbors in Akron, Ohio.
Ultimate Frisbee and drinking goes hand in hand. Last month during a Halloween tournament, Tristan and I went to New Belgium Brewing and got some beers. The nice thing about dressing up (in tights!) and going to New Belgium is getting some free beer. The beer I got was Imperial Berliner Weiss.
After some careful consideration, I’ve decided that my ultimate brewery would actually be the best brewpub you’ve ever been to. Yes, I do love a lot of big name breweries for their awesome and usually well-distributed beers (thanks, Deschutes), but the neighborhood hangouts are the ones that stick with me. My ultimate brewpub would be a hybrid of all of my favorite places in Colorado to drink quality craft beer.
Background: This year at GABF Funkwerks really hit it out of the park. Not only did they win small brewery of the year, they also won 2 gold medals for Sasion and Belgian-Style Strong Specialty Ale. The later was won by Deceit, a strong belgian golden ale. Deceit is a beer that does a very good job at hiding its 9.4%abv. This has been normally a taproom only release but a small amount of bottles have been released in the Colorado market.
There isn’t much that I like about winter. The days get dark earlier, the weather gets colder, up until this year, I wasn’t really into skiing or snowboarding, so my weekend social life was pretty dismal, and it was more often cloudy and dreary especially when I lived in the midwest. The only real positives were college basketball, holidays that revolved around eating, and dark, winter warmer beers.
During the week of the Great American Beer Festival, Epic Brewing out of Salt Lake City, Utah made a splash by announcing that they would likely be opening up a second brewery in Denver.
ABV – 5.6%
“Never judge a book by its cover.” -every mother ever.
We’ve all heard it time and time again, the bit of maternal guidance that we take into account every time something new comes along. If heeded, it can open doors you didn’t even know existed. And beer is no exception. New Belgium’s 1554 was my eye-opening beer that, after diving into a deep, black, creamy pint of it, and despite not being a “dark beer person”, opened the door of infinite beer possibility. All you have to do is drink the neck; within those first few sips 1554 shows its complexity and body, as well as its smooth, softer side. A perfect warm up while reading next to the fire place in the upcoming inevitable Colorado snow storms (please!?!).
The latest, and as always, ridiculous It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia continues to a 12th season. And what better show to sit down with an Ultimate 6er for? Well, maybe not the entire six pack since some of these are strictly for the type of… gentlemen… that the series showcases. So here’s to everyone’s favorite show about everyone’s favorite alcoholics.
The very first beer I ever tried when moving to Fort Collins in November of 2009, was Odell Brewing Company’s winter seasonal, Isolation Ale. I couldn’t have asked for a better welcome to one of the most prolific craft beer towns in the world.
Amstel Light – the import equivalent of Michelob Ultra. For rich people. Men’s Health magazine recently advocated drinking Amstel Light if you’re trying to cut the calories while training.